Employees’ morale goes a long way in determining the success or failure of a company as a business cannot function effectively with unhappy employees.
If you’re attuned to the ambience in your workplace, you should be able to tell when employees begin to exhibit subtle and non-subtle signs of low morale: reduced collaboration, watered-down performances, and fewer conversations among employees. The best way to handle low morale is to effect positive changes immediately before it takes a stronghold.
Here are some effective techniques you should apply towards boosting your employees’ morale.
There is often a disconnect between how the employers and the employees perceive the office communication. Most employers tend to believe that the company’s culture promotes free exchange of ideas and open discussion, whereas, the majority of employees think the reverse is the case.
If you want to maintain high morale among employees, then you have to deliberately foster an office space where everyone in a team is comfortable with contributing ideas and asking questions. Employees who feel constrained to communication eventually develop resentment towards the company, customers, and even team members. If possible, foster an open-door policy that encourages employees to come to you, and to feel at ease while discussing pertinent issues
2. Hold Regular Team Building Activities for Work
Team building activities create an opportunity for the employees and the management to socialise, have fun, and in the process, figure out ways to improve the company output. Even more, these activities give the employees the feeling that the management actually cares, thus increasing their level of engagement. Team building activities also foster unity, encourage team togetherness, and open channels of communication when everyone is back at work.
These activities can take on different forms; it can be going to the movies together, an hour lunch and learn, or even a full day out of the office. The common themes in all these fun ideas are recognition, caring, appreciation, and rewards.
To ensure that the company outing is fun for everyone, request for anonymous nominations, and let each team vote for their favourite activity. This gives employees a feeling of being involved in the decision-making process, and it guarantees that the selected team building activities serve everyone.
3. Get Feedback from Employees
Getting accurate feedback from employees is crucial to attaining the company goals. By receiving honest feedback, you’ll be able to deliver more on your strengths and improve on your weakness, thus boosting employees’ morale.
Take this scenario as an instance. An employee walks up confidently to her employer and lets him know that she appreciates the company’s care and bonuses, but doesn’t lack the fact that employees are hardly allowed to go on breaks. Now, the employer can boost the morale of this employee by giving certain days off.
Rather than wait till an employee is resigning to garner vital feedback information, ask beforehand to save the company time, money, and increase productivity.
Here are some of the means to get honest, real-time feedback:
- Show interest in your employees: At staff meetings, performance reviews, corporate team building activities or even during casual conversation, you should ask your employees how things are going at the office.
Listen to what they have to say, show that you genuinely care, and then take steps towards addressing their concerns. The morale of your employees is directly linked to them knowing that the managerial side is eager to listen and take necessary measures
- Be attentive to nonverbal behaviour: Nonverbal cues are sometimes more effective at tipping employers to a problem. During meetings, look for non-verbal signs of low morale such as tense faces, downcast eyes, and people avoiding eye contact. If you notice any of these, ask the right questions to know what the problem is, try to understand its source, and address it as soon as is possible.
Employees who feel that their concerns are a priority will feel appreciated, and this will lead to high morale and more productivity.
4. Make Everyone Feel like a Part of a Set Company Goal
It is a lot easier for employees to work together towards reaching a goal when they are all aware of what the goal is. Each employee should have an outline of the steps they can take towards helping the company realise its objectives. This gives the team members a sense of purpose and a sense of being a part of the company’s success, further boosting their morale.
5. Develop and Foster an Attitude of Gratitude
First, as the manager/CEO of a company, you should develop an attitude of expressing gratitude towards your employees for what they have done for the company either by doing it in person or by giving a thank-you card.
When you recognise the actions, achievements, and stellar performance of an employee, you motivate that person to do more for the company. Besides, there is no doubt that every employee loves and delights in a performance-based bonus.
A bonus boosts an employee’s morale as a reward for a good job, and it motivates other team members to want to do more. If you continue with this attitude of going the extra mile to show appreciation, the employee’s morale will stay high.
Additionally, as part of corporate team building activities, you should foster this attitude among team members. When a member of Team A reaches a particular target, the whole team should celebrate as one. This will go a long way in ensuring team collaboration in the company.
6. Occasionally Surprise your Employees
Giving spontaneous surprises is a great way to boost employees’ morale, and motivate them to keep up the hard work. The surprise can be as simple as getting smoothies for all, sponsoring them to watch a new movie in the cinema, or letting them all leave work early on a Friday. Be creative and spontaneous with these surprises.
7. Let Go of Negative Workers
Some workers condescend, intimidate, belittle, demean people in front of others, swear, behave rudely, only promote negative feedback, spread rumours, gossip, act racist or sexist, withhold vital information, lie, or refuse to accept blame when due.
If you have an employee exhibiting any of these traits, he/she might be the main reason for the low morale in your office. In this case, the best course of action is to let go of the person, even if the person is in an upper management position. This will go a long way in boosting morale.
8. Invest in Employee Training
One of the best ways to boost employee morale is by investing in training and educational opportunities for your employees. It is best to consider the team career goals, and then subsequently provide opportunities for your employees to get the resources and education needed to achieve these goals.
The education can be an online course, a learning summit, or a conference, so far, it is a platform that affords employees the opportunity to increase and maximise their skills. Plus, it further boosts their morale by providing time outside of office work. This is a win-win situation; the employees get the opportunity to better their skills, and the company receives the benefit of more proficient employees.
What’s more, it is important that you lead by example. As the manager/CEO, can take up a team building course to learn how to better interact with employees, attend to constructive criticism, and generally improve the ambience in the office.
9. Be Transparent in Tracking Promotions
Transparency as regards promotions in the company is key to boosting employee morale. First, you need to make each team member aware of the performance level they need to attain before they can qualify for a promotion. The company guidelines for what is expected before and after a promotion should be clear.
To maintain high morale among your employees, the feasibility of a promotion needs to be emphasised. Help your employees to simultaneously expand their capabilities and work responsibilities, guaranteeing that they are doing enough to be eligible for promotion.
10. Encourage Delegation and Outsourcing
Employee burnout is a serious threat to any company. When employees are overwhelmed and overworked, they can lose interest in work and suffer low morale. One of the ways to prevent this is by encouraging employees to delegate tasks to team members or to outsource work to outside experts and freelancers. This will boost their morale and make them work productively.
The Bottom Line
It is vital to establish a team-oriented culture that employees can appreciate. After all, the mental state and attitude to work of your employees dramatically determine the success of the company.
If you are interested in learning more on team building activities, staff retention strategies, or in signing up for courses for your employees, you should contact MCI Solutions. MCI Solutions has a consultancy approach with customised learning programs that can help transform processes, behaviours, and attitudes within your company.